Researchers Find Evidence of Humans Making Clothes 120,000 Years Ago

 


Researchers found some of the earliest evidence of early humans making clothes in a cave in Morocco. The discovery of tools in the form of bones from skinned animals, shows that the practice has existed since 120,000 years ago.

Dr Emily Hallett, of the Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History in Germany, the study's first author, said the research reinforces the view that early humans in Africa were innovative and resourceful.


"Our study adds another section to the long list of hallmarks of human behavior that began to appear in the archaeological record of Africa around 100,000 years ago," he said.



Given that leather and fur are unlikely to last for hundreds of thousands of years, previous studies looking at clothing tick DNA have shown that human clothing may have appeared as early as 170 years ago, and may have belonged to anatomically modern humans in Africa.


This latest study adds further weight to the idea that early humans may have had something in their wardrobe. Hallett and his team report how they analyzed animal bones excavated in a series of excavations spanning decades at the Contrebandiers Cave on Morocco's Atlantic coast. The cave had previously been revealed to contain the remains of ancient humans.


Hallett said he began studying animal bones in 2012 because he was interested in reconstructing the diet of early humans and exploring whether any dietary changes were associated with changes in stone tool technology.





However, he and his colleagues instead found 62 bones from layers dated to between 120,000 and 90,000 years ago that showed signs of being turned into a tool.


The function of these various tools is still unknown. But the team found objects with broad rounded ends known as spatulas and made from ribs.


"The spatula-shaped tool is ideal for scraping and thereby removing internal connective tissue from skin and fur during the working process, as it does not penetrate the skin or fur," the team wrote.


The team also found whale teeth, which were apparently used to slough off rocks. "I didn't expect to find it because the whale remains had not been identified in the Pleistocene context of north Africa," Hallett said.


He said it was possible bone tools could be used to prepare skin for other uses, the combined evidence suggests it is highly likely, especially for feathers, that early humans made clothing.


However, it is not known what kind of clothing humans produced at this time, and whether they were mainly used for body protection or for more symbolic purposes.



Hallett adds that he believes European Neanderthals and other similar species made clothing from animal skins long before 120,000 years ago, not least because they lived in a temperate, cold environment.


"Ancient human clothing and equipment was likely part of the behavior that led to human adaptive success and our ability to succeed globally and in climatically extreme regions," he said.

Researchers Find Evidence of Humans Making Clothes 120,000 Years Ago Researchers Find Evidence of Humans Making Clothes 120,000 Years Ago Reviewed by thecekodok on 9:23:00 PM Rating: 5
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